The Federal Commission of Economic Competition (“COFECE” or the “Commission”) published on 30 March COFECE´s Digital Strategy to address the new challenges presented by the digitalization of the economy from a competition perspective. In its document COFECE lists five specific actions that it intends to carry out in order to focus its review and scrutiny of digital markets.

Acknowledging that the digitization of the economy touches on the exchange of products and services by consumers and suppliers in various markets, taking advantage of telecommunications infrastructure and technological advances as enablers of new ways for such exchange of products and services, COFECE has asserted that needs to be prepared to be in a position to effectively perform its function and ensure the efficient functioning of digital markets in Mexico and champion the benefits of digitization in favor of consumers. 

In COFECE’s Digital Strategy, the Commission has proposed to carry out the following actions:

  1. Prepare a document assessing the possible implications of digital markets in Mexico, which is intended to address the following issues: (i) the functioning of digital markets, their benefits and risks; (ii) the international experience in these markets; (iii) the specific effects on the Mexican economy; (iv) the challenges in the areas of competition, consumer and personal data protection, which need to be addressed in order to regulate the functioning of these markets; and (v) the current institutional structure in Mexico and, if necessary, the relevance of adapting it to face future challenges. 
  2. Support forums with international experts, with the aim of training COFECEs staff in the operation of digital platforms and discuss cases, experiences and policies of other countries related to these markets. 
  3. Strengthen the capacities of COFECE's staff and technological infrastructure, through a management plan for processing of big data, as well as to understand the scope of artificial intelligence, in order to detect and prevent anti-competitive practices.
  4. Establish a Digital Markets Competition Unit, within the Commission's organizational structure, to analyze the development of the digital economy in Mexico and its repercussions on competition, and better understand the reach of digital markets and be able to effectively exercise its scrutiny powers.
  5. Strengthen international cooperation to share knowledge, experiences and developments in this area with the competition authorities of other countries, as well as to jointly identify actions that can be implemented to contribute to the better functioning of digital markets worldwide.

Undoubtedly, COFECE's Digital Strategy comes at a time of new challenges to competition policy resulting from the fast-paced evolution of digital markets and is presented as a great opportunity for participants in these markets to actively engage in the process by expressing their views and concerns, seeking to contribute to COFECE’s efforts in this front.